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J Neurol. 2012 Apr;259(4):729-38. doi: 10.1007/s00415-011-6254-z. Epub 2011 Sep 29.

Psychometric performance of a generic walking scale (Walk-12G) in multiple sclerosis and Parkinson's disease.

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Department of Health Sciences, Lund University, Lund, Sweden.


Walking difficulties are common in neurological and other disorders, as well as among the elderly. There is a need for reliable and valid instruments for measuring walking difficulties in everyday life since existing gait tests are clinician rated and focus on situation specific capacity. The Walk-12G was adapted from the 12-item multiple sclerosis walking scale as a generic patient-reported rating scale for walking difficulties in everyday life. The aim of this study is to examine the psychometric properties of the Walk-12G in people with multiple sclerosis (MS) and Parkinson's disease (PD). The Walk-12G was translated into Swedish and evaluated qualitatively among 25 people with and without various neurological and other conditions. Postal survey (MS, n = 199; PD, n = 189) and clinical (PD, n = 36) data were used to test its psychometric properties. Respondents considered the Walk-12G relevant and easy to use. Mean completion time was 3.5 min. Data completeness was good (<5% missing item responses) and tests of scaling assumptions supported summing item scores to a total score (corrected item-total correlations >0.6). Coefficient alpha and test-retest reliabilities were >0.9, and standard errors of measurement were 2.3-2.8. Construct validity was supported by correlations in accordance with a priori expectations. Results are similar to those with previous Walk-12G versions, indicating that scale adaptation was successful. Data suggest that the Walk-12G meets rating scale criteria for clinical trials, making it a valuable complement to available gait tests. Further studies involving other samples and application of modern psychometric methods are warranted to examine the scale in more detail.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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